We are continuing from yesterday to read the Book of the Covenant that Moses is writing down on Mt. Sinai. So the 10 Commandments were given however there are “codes/laws” (such as the Hammurabi) that were already established that they were to follow. So God clarifies them so that they know exactly what to do. Here is an example and you know I am going to pick the gross one. In verse 22:19 “Anyone who has sexual relations with an animal is to be put to death”. Having relations with animals was something the Canaanites and Mesopotamians attributed to their gods as a way to worship. God states this not as a general rule, but as a clarification. See, Near Eastern Laws already had a law on this. It stated it was punishable by death if you have relations with certain animals. God was so good to say ALL animals.
These are the civil, social, and moral applications to the 10 commandments SO THAT as these people enter the Promise Land, they will be set apart from the world around them. Please feel free to make your own applications here 😉.
Three times a year you are celebrate a festival to the Lord (23:14) Remember the Lord set up in advance the actually days on the Calendar he will die on a Cross AND give the Holy Spirit freely. A great way to spread the Gospel is to have both these events occur during a festival when people gather to the Temple from all over the world, so that when they go back home they can account and witness what they saw with their own eyes. Sooo God tells them to gather for the feasts of “Unleavened Bread, (celebrate the Passover events) “Harvest of the First Fruits” (Weeks, Pentecost), and “Ingathering” (Booths, Tabernacles). Women and children would have normally accompanied the males on the tri-yearly pilgrimages. This maintained national and social unity of the 12 tribes of Israel, as well as their spiritual unity. (Like a family gathering).
Chapter 24 is HUGE and I am not going to have time to do it justice. What is the most important word in the Bible…Covenant. It hold every page together. A Covenant requires a sacrifice.
Chapter 12 and 24 are connected here. The Covenant confirmed has given them a direct relationship with the Lord. They are not simply hearing about the covenant given, but they are partaking in it. The altar is made for them and blood is poured out on both the altar and the people. This is the moment they are being confirmed into the covenant. Recognizing his promises and connecting the 70 from where Genesis, we now see that there is a substitute that is sacrificed and the blood is on them. 24:11 “God did not raise his hands against them”. Instead he sat in community with them and ate and drank with them. Is God just? Think of it this way, they deserved, as we all do, the the full wrath of death. If a Judge was sitting in court and he was a just judge and a sinner presented themselves, we would expect a verdict of “Guilty”. We expect a sentence. God is just. He finds us guilty and and still hands down the sentence of the death penalty. BUT through the one taking the wrath of the guilty charge is the one that is sacrificed, a substitute, and the sinner is said to be free from the charge. Then what….they eat and drink with Him. They have access to Him directly. This follows the giving of the laws so that we can represent him in thankfulness for that sacrifice. To be his ambassadors. 2 Corinthians 5:20-21
20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.